FCTC Article 8

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Article 8 of the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) recommends measures to protect from exposure to tobacco smoke.[1]

The protection from tobacco smoke is recommended in;[1]

  • indoor workplaces
  • public transport
  • indoor public places
  • other public places (as appropriate)

Guiding Principles

Scientific evidence prove that there is no safe level for exposure to tobacco smoke. Exposure leads to serious and often deadly diseases, including diseases in the heart and blood vessels and the respiratory system. It is also known to cause lung and other cancers. Children, including the unborn and the newborns, may also suffer severe, long-term harm or even die as a result of exposure to tobacco smoke. [1]

Advantages

Banning tobacco smoking at public places helps to prevent serious health problems for the person smoking and the other persons around him. People standing next to the smoker will, against their wishes, inhale the tobacco smoke. Tobacco smoke contains carbon monoxide; a gas which if inhaled reduces the oxygen carrying capacity of the blood. Tobacco smoke also contains substance that causes cancer, leading cancers of the lungs, mouth and throat, and also secondary cancers at other sites in the body.[1]==

Implementation

Completely smoke-free environments with no exceptions are the only proven way to fully protect people from the harms of tobacco smoke. Separate smoking rooms, ventilation systems and other measures intended to accommodate smoking are not effective in preventing exposure. Governments must enact and enforce comprehensive smoke free laws to achieve high compliance and maintain public and political support. Guidelines for implementation of Article 8 were adopted at the 2nd Conference of the Parties (COP2). Although there is no timeline imposed in the treaty itself, the guidelines recommend that comprehensive smoke-free policies to be put in place in a country within five years they enter into force of the Convention.[1]

Implementation - Sri Lanka

According to the section 39 of National Authority on Tobacco and Alcohol (NATA) Act, No. 27 of 2006; Smoking in an area to which the public have access to be is an offence. According to the NATA Act; (1) No person shall smoke or allow any person to smoke any tobacco product within any enclosed public place (2) Any person who being the owner, occupier, proprietor, manager, trustee or person in charge of any enclosed public place shall ensure that no person smokes any tobacco product within any such enclosed public place

Enclosed public place

According to the NATA Act, No. 27 of 2006; “public place” means any place to which the public have access. The “enclosed public place” includes any;

  • government department
  • statutory authority or board or public institution
  • office premises
  • bank
  • court house
  • auditorium
  • sports complex
  • hospital, clinic, dispensary or laboratory
  • school, university or other educational institution
  • library
  • museums
  • places of worship
  • hotel, guest house, lodge, hostel, restaurant or club
  • internet cafe
  • cinema or theatre
  • supermarket
  • airport
  • a waiting room in a railway station or bus terminal or any public conveyance
  • building or any built in area
  • lift (elevator)

However, at;

  • any hotel, guest house or lodge having thirty rooms or more
  • any restaurant or club having the seating capacity of a minimum of thirty persons or
  • an airport

might have set aside a place exclusively for smoking within its premises. Such area should be provided with adequate ventilation and should conform to the prescribed air quality standards.

According to the WHO Report on the Global Tobacco Epidemic (2015), Sri Lanka country profile, six to seven public places are completely smoke-free.[2]

Tobacco Unmasked Resources

Other relevant TobaccoUnmasked entries:

Notes

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 World Health Organization. Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, 2005, accessed March 2017
  2. WHO report on the global tobacco epidemic, 2015.World Health Organization, 2015, accessed March, 2017